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Everything you never knew you needed to know for this week.


Prechecked | September 13, 2018

Did You Know?

Charles Darwin is credited with creating the first iteration of a desk chair. The notorious workaholic slapped some wheels on an armchair to create his version. It wasn’t until the rise of the office worker in the late 19th century that desk chairs as we know them became commonplace.

Darwin and the Modern Office

While the jury is out on whether open office environments actually improve communication, we can probably all agree it's sometimes difficult to get work done. From the noisy typer (is that a T-Rex attacking a keyboard?) to the new guy squatting at your usual desk (that was my surge protector, bro) - learning to survive in an open office is key. Cue the New York Times and a few great tips for Darwinism in the modern office.

A desk stretch a day keeps the doctor away*

Feeling more like a ‘desk warrior’ than a ‘road warrior’? NBC News and Charlee Atkins (founder of Le SWEAT) bring you 5 exercises you can do at your desk to relieve the pressure and pain that can accompany long periods of sitting. All you need is a tennis ball. *Not serious medical advice in any way.

‘Fur-ternity’ Leave

Here at Upside, we call it ‘Paw-ternity’ leave but no matter the pun, the perk is the same - paid time off to care for a new pet. This new work policy is springing up across the country, aimed at benefiting the leading segment of pet owners - millennials. While you might take paws at the idea (I couldn’t help it!), CNBC dives into how these types of policies provide broader benefits for a company.


Prechecked | August 23, 2018

WeWork's Beef with Beef

In a move that would surely make Ron Swanson cringe, WeWork’s latest sustainability effort takes meat off the menu. The new restriction is designed to help the co-working company reduce its carbon footprint. WeWork removed meat from its vending services and corporate meetings/events, and banned reimbursement for meat on employee expense reports. Meat lovers, meet your latest enemy.

REDUCE, REUSE, RECYCLE TIP!

Dress for Success is an international non-profit that provides professional services to enable women to break the cycle of poverty. DFS also collects gently used women’s professional attire - donation locations here. A great way to give your retired work clothes a second life.

The Last Straw

The movement to remove plastic straws from our daily lives won’t slow down any time soon. Major companies from Starbucks to American Airlines have announced they will totally phase out the plastic sippers in the coming years. As part of its Plastic or Planet? series, National Geographic digs into how bans are being implemented across cities and corporations alike.

Bring Your Green Hat

If you’re concerned about how your own business trips might be impacting mother nature, there are a few pretty simple changes you can make to green-ify your travel. The Manual provides 9 Tips for Traveling Green, from bringing along a water bottle to making sure your AC at home isn’t on full blast. Green hats recommended, streaking through the airport definitely not.


Prechecked | August 16, 2018

TSA + New X-RAY = HOORAY

In their latest push to cut down on lengthy security lines, TSA has introduced new x-ray machines at select airports that use tomography to capture images of carry-ons - giving them clearer pictures of your luggages’ insides. The new machines should decrease on the number of bags that need manual searches AND increase the weird findings @TSA posts to Instagram.

No, you lock it up!

From public WiFi to in-room USB connections, traveling serves up a whole host of cybersecurity issues for our precious mobile devices. So take a cue from Wedding Crashers and lock it up. When you’re not tethered to your own office’s robust security systems (shout out to Upside’s awesome security team!) here’s a rundown of how to keep cyber thieves at bay.

Cybersecurity school's in session.

Not sure if your company’s cybersecurity strategy is robust enough? You’re not alone. The Wall Street Journal has partnered with Vistage, FBI-affiliated InfraGard and CySec professional trainers ISC2 to present a 2-day event packed with practical takeaways and hands-on how-tos designed just for small businesses. The Small Business Academy will help school you in how to protect your business from a cyber attack.


Prechecked | August 9, 2018

Employees gone wild.

Airbnb is having a field day with business travelers. As more employees disregard their corporate policies - or "go rogue" as Fast Company would put it - Airbnb is reaping the benefits. While the homier feel of shared-lodging isn't on every business traveler's must-have list, the demand is significant enough for Airbnb to have launched its own "for work" platform... aptly named Airbnb for Work.

What's mine is yours - even my 2001 Chevy Malibu 💁

GM is taking their car-sharing platform, Maven, to the next level. In July, the car manufacturer introduced peer-to-peer sharing to the Maven platform, allowing existing GM vehicle owners to "share" their cars (when not in use) with existing Maven users. Sadly, you actually can't "share" your 2001 Malibu - only cars model years 2015 or newer are eligible.

This is the true story of 7 strangers, picked to live in a house and find out what happens...

when people stop buying homes and start getting real (into co-living). The co-living boom is here, especially in cities where demand for housing is sky-high and prices are sky-higher. Not in the know on co-living? Think dorm living for working adults, with small sleeping accommodations and shared everything else. Purposely designed spaces that encourage community-living are springing up coast to coast and rising in popularity.


Prechecked | August 2, 2018

The case for a four day work week

A New Zealand company found the key to happier, more productive work weeks - and it wasn’t in-office masseuses or catered lunches. The secret? One ‘less’ working day. Estate planning firm, Perpetual Guardian, discovered that allowing for four day work weeks actually made their employees as productive (if not more!) than when forced to work the typical five days. Long live long weekends.

How not to have the post-vacay Sunday scaries

“Vacation is a business imperative.” We at Prechecked couldn’t agree more. But we also fall victim to the anxiety that sometimes comes with returning to an inbox that’s exploding with unreads. Luckily Forbes collected some solid tips to help manage the return to reality (aka your desk job) post vacation.

The numbers don’t lie

If you’re still of the mindset that taking vacation hinders your ability to get ahead at work, it’s time to think again. According to the Harvard Business Review, workers that took more than ten vacation days a year fared far better when it came to receiving a raise or a bonus. No better time than now to break out your Out of Office auto-reply. 😎


Prechecked | July 27, 2018

When Pigs Whales Fly.

The inaugural flight of the BelugaXL happened last week, as the behemoth cargo plane graced the skies of southern France. Airbus, the plane's manufacturer, acknowledged the plane is intentionally painted like a whale - and more specifically a happy whale. BelugaXL "features beluga whale-inspired eyes and an enthusiastic grin" Pigs everywhere are super jealous.

5 Tips From The CEO Of Milk Stork

When it comes to parenting and entrepreneuring, "there's no 'off' switch for either." So says Kate Torgersen, CEO of Milk Stork, the start-up that's making breastfeeding while business-tripping easier for working mothers. Anyone who has tried lugging gallons of milk through TSA will appreciate this lady!

So, are you a dog or cat person?

The Department of Transportation might not be either. DOT was inundated with comments before a recent deadline seeking suggestions on potential regulations of mile-high support animals. Lately travelers have tried to bring animals ranging from dogs and cats to perhaps most infamously - peacocks aboard their flights. While the debate rages on, we can all agree @lilou_sfpig is an Instagram must follow.


Prechecked | July 19, 2018

It's so hot I can barely think strai... where was I?   

When 1+1 seems like a challenging task in the summer - just blame Mother Nature. New research suggests high temps can confound people's thinking, making simple tasks - like basic math - that much harder to do. The study even suggests standardized test results can be impacted by heat, (which totally explains my SAT scores, Mom!).

No, you probably can't rent Taylor Swift's Rhode Island getaway.

That dream vacation home on the majestic bluff with its own pool, beachfront access and twelve bedrooms for $100 a night? Yeah, that's probably not a thing. USA Today breaks down six travel scams that can befall vacationers in the summer months. From fake listings to 'substitute' accommodations, don't let the bad guys ruin your hard-earned PTO.

Summer is the perfect time to scratch that itch.

And we're not just talking mosquito bites. With some potential down time on your horizon, now could be the perfect time to do a little life planning. Upside's very own Hawaiian-shirt-wearing President, Scott Case, breaks down his tried and true method for assessing your current situation, taking stock of your goals and outlining how to achieve them with the Space-Time-Life Exercise. Disclaimer: not for use with bug bites.


Prechecked | July 12, 2018

Recycling is so in right now.

The defunct TWA terminal in New York's JFK airport is gearing up for a comeback of sorts. Slated to open in 2019, the new TWA hotel transformed the terminal's famed "head house," designed by Eero Saarinen into its center lobby. In a nod to TWA's heyday, the hotel is designed to make you feel like you're squarely in the 1960's, from rotary phones to Tab in the mini-bars and everything in between.

Beanie Babies for the next generation.

Comedian and author W. Kamau Bell breaks down his best tips for travel after spending months on the road performing his latest stand-up bit. His greatest trick? Always making sure to bring home the latest iteration of Ty's famed beaned-stuffed, big eyed toys, for his kids.

They see me rollin'. They hatin'.

While electric scooters have already made big splash in cities around the world, they're about to hit the big time. In a newly announced partnership with Lime, Uber will begin renting electric scooters through their app. Uber's no newbie to the electric-powered go-go machine market having acquired Jump Bikes earlier this year. Best thing about these electric scooters versus their early 2000's self-propelled version? Less likelihood for ankle injuries.

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